Half Premonitions of the Moon


Half Premonitions of the Moon is an instrument, modular score, and set of performance instructions housed in a custom-built enclosure. The score and instrument were developed by Holland Hopson, a sound and media artist, composer and improviser. The enclosure was designed, printed, and hand produced by Sarah Bryant, a book artist who works under the name Big Jump Press.

The customizable score is assembled from a set of 36 cards. This allows individuals or groups to use chance operations to create a unique version of the piece for each performance. The instrument itself is a custom-designed, laser cut bullroarer played by swinging it in circles on the end of a string. Bullroarers are some of the oldest and most widespread instruments in human cultures. They can be found across the globe from Australasia to Africa and the Americas They are often used to evoke natural phenomena such as wind and rain during ritual events. This musical work favors patience, stasis and quiet focus over drama, development and sudden contrasts.

To create the score Hopson wrote code using Processing to generate and position graphic shapes on the page. Bryant converted the shapes to printing plates and used traditional printing and bookbinding techniques to convert Holland’s digital designs to a set of cards and an accordion folded housing. Presenting the project as a kit allows for the dissemination of the piece to multiple venues, including gallery spaces, outdoor performances, and libraries with collections of artist books. By creating this hybrid object, Bryant and Hopson hope to bring together audiences from the book art, music and visual art worlds.

Produced in 2022 in an edition of 45
Letterpress printed from polymer plates and laser-cut oak on French Construction paper.
11 x 3 x 1" when closed.